Keeping up with the news is overwhelming, even at times when it doesn’t feel like the planet is hurtling toward apocalypse with painful speed. Hurricanes, nuclear weapons, icebergs crumbling like stale pastries–who has the time or emotional energy to keep clicking the headlines, day in and day out? It’s understandable that a busy, grown adult like yourself would be focused on getting to work on time, putting food on the table, spending time with family and friends, rather than, say, keeping up with and forming strong opinions about the daily paroxysms of the very rich men running the National Football League as they attempt to negotiate the fact that their players seem to be exercising their First Amendment rights more and more often these days. A person would have to have a pretty relaxing life, with very few meaningful responsibilities, to find the time to work themselves up into a frothy rage over something so meaningless in the scheme of things.
Or maybe not. Here’s United States President Donald Trump on the White House lawn this afternoon, via CNN:
And the transcript, via Deadspin:
In my opinion, the NFL has to change, or you know what’s gonna happen? Their business is gonna go to hell. Okay?
We have to respect our national anthem, we have to respect our country, and they’re not respecting our country. And most importantly, the fans agree with me—I mean largely the fans agree, but we have to show total respect for our national anthem for our flag, for our country, we have to do it.
And you can, there are plenty of places, and there are plenty of—personally when they’re protesting during the football game. I think they can find better places, but they cannot do it during the national anthem.
[Is asked question]
I’m going to see, I’m looking at that very closely, I am not happy with it, I will tell you I am not happy with it.
Trump is mad, you see, because the commissioners and owners of the NFL have allowed players who choose to take a knee in protest during the national anthem to go on playing football, rather than pulling “that son of a bitch off the field right now,” as he suggested they do earlier this week.
In terms of Puerto Rico and all that other stuff, we’re sure he’s got it covered too. Rest assured: the president knows that the ocean is very, very big.